Brian Dorn

Live from the Living Room, December 11

Back at the Garden Room (i.e., the basement) of the Pride Center of the Capital Region for this intimate, warm open reading (there is no mic nor no need for one), with our straight-friendly host Don Levy.

Brian Dorn (Left), Madeline & Joe Krasuman

Brian Dorn was the featured poet with a long set loaded with his (& our) favorites as well as many poems with Capital Region references, beginning with his “flag ship” poem “From My Poems to Yours.”  Others included “Back in the Day,” “Standard of Living” (on inflated salaries of athletes), “Words,” & “Monkey Bars” (evolution).  A favored theme, which he does well, without being sanctimonious, is thoughts on spriituality, such as “I Need a Sign,” “In God We Trust,” & “Your Footsteps.”  His local references ran the length of the Northway from Albany to Lake George, with “Paradox City,” “Skyline” (on the Egg, & following the rhymes), “R & R” (Rachael Ray, from Lake George), “The Ethan Allen,” “Huge,” “Happy Dude,” “Eyesore” (the ruins of Gaslight Village), & “Anna Lane” (where he grew up in Malta).  Brian has been reading at open mics poems about Schenectady, that he has now put together in 3-parts.  He ended with another signature piece, “We All,” & recruited Avery’s date, Madeline, to echo the lines in the poem.  Many of these poems can be found on YouTube.

Speaking of Avery, he was 1st on the open mic list & began with some untitled reflections from memory, then on to another of his “commercials” (enthusiastic promotion of one form of hippy spirituality or another), this for “Karma Yoga.”  I took a totally other tack with my 1st poem, “The Anals of Perious Frink,” then a poem about my father, “Asthma.”  Adam Tedesco began with a poem he said can be read either way, “Front to Back,” then what seemed to be an inner argument & negative view of a relationship, “Maximum Ordinate.”

Joe Krausman read his poems in 1’s & 2’s — “Union” about being married to a woman with 2 heads, & “Hard Time Did Not Write on My Door,” a villanelle written entirely with 1-syllable words, a tour-de-force (based on the famous elegy of Chidiock (aka Charles) Tichbourne).

Don Levy finished out the night with “Last Call at DeJohn’s” (& referenced the passing of Lou Reed), & another in his series of blasts at homophobics, “No Cake for You!”

After such warmth of poetry, it was hard to go back out in the cold, but we can expect to be back on the 2nd Wednesday of the month at the Pride Center on Hudson Ave., the basement door under the stairs.